Arts and Cultural orgs throughout Boston endorse Create the Vote Boston 2021 Policy Platform

Endorsees include Museum of Fine Arts, Company One, ArtsBoston, Boston Gay Men’s Chorus, Pao Arts Center, Boston Children’s Museum, Boston Arts + Music Soul (BAMS) Fest, and 30 others from every corner of the city 

BOSTON, July 9, 2021—The Create the Vote Boston Coalition (CTV Boston) announces today that over 30 arts and cultural organizations in Boston have endorsed its policy platform, and that CTV Boston is meeting with candidates for mayor and sharing information with the public from those meetings. 

The CTV Boston 2021 policy platform lays out three priorities for the city’s next mayor: 

  • Increase arts and cultural funding to $20 million by 2025 to ensure that all Boston residents have access to creative expression and cultural experiences across their lifespan.
  • Increase funding and program support for arts education in Boston Public Schools and access to creative youth development programs across the city.
  • Make Boston a more arts and culture-friendly city by increasing space for the creation and presentation of art, streamlining permitting processes, and removing barriers for holding cultural events. 

The policy platform was co-created by CTV Boston’s shared leadership, which includes Dunamis, Company One, ArtsBoston, Boston Gay Men’s Chorus, Museum of Fine Arts, Pao Arts Center, Edvestors, MASSCreative, and artist Ana Masacote. These core partners have been working closely with artists, creative workers, cultural organizations and arts groups from across the creative sector to develop a platform that reflects the multitude of experiences and perspectives of Boston’s arts community, centering the voices of those who have historically been marginalized from processes of advocacy and engagement.

CTV Boston met with mayoral candidate John Barros June 22 and with Boston City Councilor and mayoral candidate Michelle Wu on June 28. Earlier this week CTV Boston met with Boston City Councilor and mayoral candidate Annissa Essaibi George as well as State Representatives Jon Santiago, summaries of the both meetings are forthcoming. CTV Boston will meet Boston City Councilor and mayoral candidate Andrea Campbell on July 16. CTV Boston is currently scheduling a meeting with Mayor Kim Janey. 

In addition to meeting with candidates, CTV Boston will host a mayoral forum in September that is focused on art, culture, and creativity. CTV Boston is also engaging new voters throughout the mayoral campaign, by educating them about the ways in which mayors can affect arts and cultural organizations and why voting matters.

“The next mayor of Boston will lead the city out of the COVID-19 pandemic toward a more inclusive, just, and connected city, and the arts and cultural sector will be central to those efforts,” said Cynthia Woo, Director of Pao Arts Center. “We seek a mayor who will prioritize the sector in critical city decisions because a strong arts and cultural sector in Boston supports the next generation of leaders, retains the brightest minds, increases economic activity, and attracts visitors from across the globe.” 

CTV Boston is also calling on the next mayor to commit to creating and implementing antiracism and anti-oppression systems in the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture programs and grantmaking. Efforts should include ensuring that city arts funding considers racial and cultural, gender, universal access and discipline diversity as distribution priorities for grant making; recruitment of artists and creative workers to partner in antiracism and anti-oppression efforts and outcomes for the City of Boston; and expanding arts education content, instruction, and professional development that amplifies narratives of Black, Indigenous, and other communities of color and is representative of the student population. 

“Everyone who lives in Boston has the right to experience creativity and culture, express themselves creatively, and see their culture reflected in artistic expression,” said Karthik Subramanian, Managing Director of Company One. “Due to the systemic racism laid bare, most recently, by the COVID-19 pandemic, BIPOC entrepreneurs and artists working in the cultural sector have not had access to the same resources, including capital and networks, as their white peers. We need sustained investment and focus on these artists and organizations to close these opportunity gaps.” 

Recognizing the role that sequential arts education and arts and cultural programming plays in the leadership development of youth, CTV Boston is also calling on the next mayor to increase funding and program support for arts education in Boston Public Schools and access to creative youth development programs across the city.

“Arts education encourages creative thinking, effective communication and collaborative work. Research tells us students engage more deeply in school when they access arts education, especially students with special needs and chronically absent students,” said Marinell Rousmaniere, CEO of EdVestors. “Robust arts education both during the school day and through creative youth development programs are critical for the development of our young people and the community and Boston must make these opportunities available to as many young people as possible.” 

CTV Boston also aims to bring new voters to the polls as active participants in democracy while elevating the importance of the arts for all voters. 

“Voting is the cornerstone of a democracy but far too few people vote. For the past three decades voters have been disproportionately of higher income, older or more partisan in their interests,” said J Cottle, Executive Director of Dunamis Boston. “Elected officials know who votes. If voter turnout in your community is well below other neighborhoods, elected officials will pay less attention, make fewer appearances and fewer appeals to your neighborhoods. This is also true for communities of people who cross neighborhood lines, like BIPOC people, LGBTQIA+ people, union members, immigrants, and members of the arts, cultural, and creative communities. Who votes has a powerful impact on public policy and government, and that includes the amount of money that the city gives out to artists and arts organizations as grants.” 

CTV Boston’s full policy platform is available here.

About Create the Vote Boston

CTV Boston Coalition is a network of arts and cultural leaders in Boston who work in collaboration and shared advocacy for a city where arts, culture and creativity are accessible to and representative of all residents. Create the Vote Boston 2021 is made up of artists, creative workers, cultural organizations, and arts groups working together to ensure Boston’s arts and cultural community is visible during the 2021 Boston Mayoral campaign and a priority in the next mayoral administration.

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published this page in CTVB2021 news 2021-07-09 13:05:01 -0400

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